Garifuna Heritage, Culture To Get Focus
Former government Minister Mike Browne has described the Garifuna heritage as perhaps the one aspect that is distinct and unique about St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
He made the comment while addressing a press conference hosted by The Garifuna Heritage Foundation (TGHF), to detail plans for an International Conference, Art and Cultural Exhibition, Film Series and Garifuna Market Place, to be staged here from March 10 to 14.
Browne lamented that the Garifuna language had been removed from the landscape with the banishment of a sizeable section of the adult population, following Paramount Chief Joseph Chatoyer’s death in March 1795. The remains of the Garifuna lifestyle are dispersed outside these shores.
“We need to connect the culture with our tourism package,” Browne indicated.
The former Minister used the opportunity to call for compensation for the indigenous people.
The activities organized by the TGHF are scheduled to open Saturday March 10 with a lecture by Dr Joseph Palacio. That will be preceded by a pilgrimage to Balliceaux earlier that day, to commemorate the holding of thousands of Garifuna on that island, before they were banished to countries throughout Central America.
Events will wind up with a cultural extravaganza, Tuesday March 13.
The activities are being held under the theme: ‘Living the Garifuna Heritage and Culture after 215 years. Strengthening links, forging networks, claiming ancestral space’.
March 14 has been declared National Heroes Day in honour of those who contributed to safeguarding this nation’s sovereignty.
Joseph Chatoyer is this country’s first and so far only national hero.
Source of article:
by William ‘Kojah’ Anthony